"The free play of art is the result of mastery. " --Ernst Fischer, The Necessity of Art

"Children are likely to live up to what you believe of them." --Ladybird Johnson

"...a well-trained ear, a well-trained intelligence, a well-trained heart, and a well-trained hand...." --Zoltan Kodaly


What is our intention?

Hey J,

Today, I'm re-reading Rilke ("Letters to a Young Poet", Rainer Maria Rilke),  and thinking about calling.  Thinking about  some of the ways we live our calling, in the midst of the press of daily details.   Starting with looking, a bit, at  intention.

 You know we have to write formal goals for each school year--within the expected parameters: specific objective, sequential action steps, measurable outcome--all of that.

Fine.  Useful, even (sometimes).   But that's not what I'm thinking about right now.

I'm wondering what my intentions are, each day, as I work with a hundred or so young, impressionable minds and spirits.

What is the one thing I hope we learn, today?
What is the one activity I hope we can create together, successfully?
In what practical ways can I show my students that they are important--not just to me, but to the world?
What would help me to be a better listener today?
How can we work together to create beauty in this day
What needs to happen so that we can have fun while working on learning--so that the 'joy comes from doing it well'?

I'm thinking this list could be many times longer, easily---and probably should be many times shorter (not so easily), so as to focus on what's truly our intention.

  Perhaps time will help me to hear the questions more clearly.

 Time to, as Rilke says, 'live the questions'.

 Perhaps I need time to hear the answers: "answers which only your innermost feeling in your quietest hour can perhaps give you' (Rilke, "Letters to a Young Poet", p. 12).

What do you think, J? Where are we going, and how do we wish to get there?  What is our intention? Lots to think about here.

And more, later.

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